The doctor grounded me. “Relax.  Meditate,” he said.  “Or go walking.”

I miss running.  I’ve been trying to meditate instead, but it’s not the same.

I’m not good at sitting still.  Maybe it’s ADHD or my bad-athlete competitive streak. “You ran six miles, I’ll run sixteen.”

“Are you crazy?” my friend said, “I’d KILL to have doctors tell me to sit on a couch and not exercise.” My friends all want to go to my doctor now.  Most people go from “couch to 5K,” I’m going from seven miles to couch… with permission!

I’ve gone from running tons of miles and split workouts to a lifting a few free weights and a sneaking some fitness on a broken treadmill in the cellar, and even that, I’m not supposed to do.

No running?  Next the doctors will tell me to start drinking, eat donuts and chips, smoke some crack.

“That should do it.  Lay off the yoga,” he said.  Did I hear that right?  What kind of doctor banishes a person from yoga?

I emailed my yogi friend who got me to love yoga in the first place.  It was her fault I loved yoga, I thought.  She was responsible for digging me out.

…I’m looking for a loophole and an accomplice here…

She responded. “Just sit. Sit for an hour each day.”

What kind of advise is that?  That’s worse than the doctor!

I’m looking for something more like, “Ah HA! Your doctor forgot to forbid this. You can do THIS yoga, and it’s all perfectly legal.” Instead, she said “Just sit.”

I can’t “just sit” for an hour!  I have an eight-year old!  He sniffs out “sitting” and destroys it.  Moms…don’t…meditate!

I remembered a Gandhi story.  Gandhi’s people were trying to rush him saying he didn’t have time to meditate for an hour.  He said, “If I don’t have time to sit for an hour, then I’ll sit for two.”

I decided to try sitting.

I’d meditated before, but Declan’s single mission in life is to interrupt my yoga and ruin meditation.  He can sniff out yoga and meditation a mile away.

I plopped him in front of a good movie.  Time to hurry up and meditate.  I took one mental step toward the other room.

“MOM! I need you!”


“Come HERE!”

“I’m busy.” I went into the other room.  “I want a few minutes alone,” I said.

“Okay. Look. This is funny.” I laughed.

“Great. Now give me some privacy.  Watch your show.  I have stuff to do.”  If I said “meditation” he’d destroy it.


I went.  I sat.  I began to meditate. Breathe…

“MOMMY! I NEED YOU!” 2.5 minutes.

“No you don’t.”


“I broke it!” is never good.  I ran.  Parts of my desk were strewn across the floor.

“It was an accident.”

How is dismantling a desk in a room not near the TV an accident?  I fixed it and stomped out of the room.  The spirit of meditation had been ripped from my heart.

“Watch TV.  Leave me alone for a minute.”  I was hoping for a several minutes strung nicely together.

I sat.  Breathe…

CRASH!  No screaming.  Breathe…

“Hey Mom!”

“Leave me alone!” Breathe…

Gurus go to the top of mountains to meditate because they’re escaping their kids.  It’s not possible for moms to meditate.

Breathe… meditate.   Soon, I sensed a presence.  I opened one eye.  There was a boy in my face.

“Are you doing YOGA?”  No, please don’t think I’m doing yoga.  You’ll never leave.

“No, I’m planning dinner. Thinking about broccoli.”  He ran.


In the end I was able to meditate for twelve glorious minutes minutes with only four commercial breaks.  In minute thirteen, I was fast asleep.  But still sitting, so it counted.

I declared victory.  It was the biggest win I’d had all day.

Time to get up…And make the vegetables…


Note: Yoga Friend One is author and yogini Claudia Azula. I especially liked her thoughts on “miracles” here.]